Cincinnati Reds third baseman Todd Frazier reacts after hitting a two-run home run off Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Zack Greinke in the first inning at Great American Ball Park.
David Kohl/David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports
CINCINNATI (AP) — Todd Frazier hit a two-run homer off Zack Greinke, who lost his perfect record at Great American Ball Park, and the Cincinnati Reds beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 4-1 on Thursday afternoon for a split of their four-game series.
The Reds won the last two games to finish a 5-5 homestand that left them stuck closer to the bottom of the NL Central than the top.
Alfredo Simon (9-3) gave up seven singles in eight innings, joining the Cardinals’ Adam Wainwright as the NL’s nine-game winners.
Greinke (8-3) had been 4-0 in five games at Great American. A slow start cost him his perfect mark. Skip Schumaker opened the Reds’ first with a single, and Frazier followed with his team-high 14th homer on Greinke’s fifth pitch of the game. Joey Votto doubled on the next pitch as well.
Cincinnati would get only one more hit off Greinke, who went six innings before leaving for a pinch-hitter.
The Reds added a pair of runs in the eighth, when Zack Cozart doubled and scored on Brandon League’s wild pitch. Ryan Ludwick had an RBI single.
Simon matched his career high with eight innings and held the lead by pitching out of a threat in the seventh with a 2-1 lead. Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier opened with singles. Tim Federowicz flied out too shallow to score the run, and Kemp was caught in a rundown after he tried to score on Miguel Rojas’ grounder. Pinch-hitter Scott Van Slyke struck out to end the threat.
Aroldis Chapman pitched the ninth for his 10th save in 11 chances.
Simon’s nine wins match his total for his last two seasons with Cincinnati, when he was a reliever. Simon moved into the rotation when Mat Latos tore knee cartilage and had surgery at the start of spring training. Latos is expected to bump left-hander Tony Cingrani from the rotation when he returns from the disabled list this weekend.
The Reds’ offense was finally back together during the homestand, with Votto returning from a strained muscle above his left knee that landed him on the disabled list for 23 games. Votto had a double and a single on Thursday, leaving him 4-for-10 in his three games back.
The Dodgers completed a 4-3 trip to Colorado and Cincinnati, two hitter-friendly ballparks. Their pitching was solid, but the offense faded at the end, scoring one run in the last two games. They were limited to eight singles on Thursday, including Kemp’s RBI hit in the first inning.
NOTES: The Dodgers start a six-game homestand on Friday against Arizona. LHP Clayton Kershaw (5-2) faces Chase Anderson (5-0). … The Reds play their next six games in Milwaukee and Pittsburgh. Homer Bailey (7-3) faces Matt Garza (4-4) on Friday. … LA is 39-22 against the Reds since the start of the 2006 season. …. The Dodgers won a challenge in the first inning, when Brandon Phillips initially was called safe at first base. The replay showed he was out. … SS Hanley Ramirez was out of the lineup for a second consecutive game with a sore throwing shoulder. … Frazier has five homers in his last 11 games. … Cozart extended his hitting streak to seven games.